GoPro has revealed that the HD Hero3's sensor is powerful enough to capture 4K at 24 frames per second - but that the processor is already running to the max and any more work would cause overheating.
The HD Hero3 features a 4K resolution setting which is limited to either 15 or 12.5 frames per second - rendering it of little use for traditional movie capture, as we highlighted in our Hero3 review.
READ: GoPro HD Hero3 review
Speaking to Tim Bucklin, senior software engineer, at the GoPro Mountain Games in Vail, Colorado, Pocket-lint learnt that the Hero3 sensor could theoretically handle even 720p at 240fps - but that overheating the processor would be a potential obstacle to overcome.
Bucklin explained that the miniature camera has already been designed using material around the lens to draw heat away from the camera's body.
Plenty of technology products use processors that need to be cooled - think of fan-cooled laptops as an example - and have to be designed within certain parameters to ensure their successful ongoing operation, as is the case with the Hero3.
UPDATE: GoPro has provided an update to clarify the company's position on the above copy: "Currently, the sensor is capable of higher frame rates at 4K and 720p ... but the processor is already being pushed to its absolute limits. Our current implementation [in the Hero3] is using both the sensor and processor to their maximum, and our current cooling technology allows us to do just that."